2-1 We Beat the Scum 2-1...Match Analysis & Player Ratings

Was it through divine intervention after Pope Francis was gifted with a Sunderland shirt? Or the meal bonding exercise paid for by Guy Poyet to build up team spirit? Whatever it was, the controversial team selection made by the Uruguayan head coach certainly paid off to put the club back onto the road of recovery with a 2-1 win against the arch-enemies that was about much more than bragging rights. [More]

We Must Win - But Can We?

It’s that time again, the sickening yet inspiring experience of the Tyne Wear Derby. I would hope I am not alone in saying that this is a surreal day in the football calendar. The dread and excitement build up in tandem. I remember everything, even tiniest details of the day and match but each memory seems like it was a lifetime ago. Even last season’s infamous 0-3 seems as long ago as Super Kev’s winner in ’99 like they have been bundled into their own memory bank separate from the rest of football. Precious memories that they are. [More]

Derby Build-up: Six years on...

As we begin to contemplate the proposition of Sunderland departing the familiar habitat of the Premier League on the eve of the derby, it'd probably be best to reflect on our ventures against the mags over the course of our current residence. Since the Keano-inspired promotion in 2007, our fortunes against the rivals against whom we crave victory most have been very mixed. [More]

Does League Position Matter Before A Derby?

It's one of football's oldest clichés; when it comes to derby games, the form book goes out the window. So how true is it? Well, looking at one of English football's fiercest derbies - Sunderland against Newcastle - suggests that, like all good clichés, there is an element of truth in it but it doesn't tell the full story. [More]

An Open Letter to Mr Ellis Short

Keep your own and your employee’s rallying calls to yourself, I’ve grown weary of such repetitive, meaningless drivel. I am sick of being lauded as part of the best group of fans in the country, like this pretentious accolade would somehow make everything alright. In times gone by this customer (that’s all I feel like these days) would beam with pride when professing his allegiance to the troops in red and white, even the talentless group that took us down with a meagre 15 points. Now I see an unstoppable pandemic starting from the top and ending with the almost exclusively spineless set of players who sheepishly stroll around the pitch. The pride has gone, but I am too tired to be angry. [More]

Lambs to the Slaughter

It was a hunch and as hunches go, I find them rarely come true. After so many decades following Sunderland and seeing, I have no idea, 1,000 plus matches, I should have known better. The belief at the back of my mind was that the team would be enthused with the arrival of a new head coach, raring to go as they had shown under the interim management of Kevin Ball, but even more so. Getting a result at Swansea seemed far from being an impossible task, followed by defeating the Mags and Steve Bruce's Hull. It would be as it were: 'What crisis!' [More]